Identifying with Race

I have been thinking a lot about how silly the concept of being colorblind within society really is. I am currently enrolled in Multicultural psychology and we have been discussing racial identity models. Race is part of the individual’s identity and everyone understands and related to their race and ethnicity on different levels. Not only is racism structurally embedded within our society; it is also what defines the individual.

The understanding one might have of their own identity, separates the individual from others and therefore contributing to racism. If race and ethnicity is a crucial part of ones identity, in order for one to define themselves from others is also critical. The individual defines them self by comparing and contrasting, observing others and their behaviors. When comparisons are made is it possible to make these distinctions without personal biases?

The concept of color blindness and how that is the solution to end structural inequalities is not even possible. Biases are made everyday as our individual identities grow and develop. It is questionable whether it is normal for the individual themselves create a social hierarchy by which they abide by. No one can truthfully be color blind against race. When the attempt to be color blind, abiding by the politics of how our society is run, one ignores the identity of the individual. It is important to acknowledge differences, as it will in turn further develop ones own identity.

If the racism that we experience today is somehow resolved with no structural inequalities that hold back minority groups, who is to say the individual racism and hierarchical social structure will not continue to hold back minority cultures and races? Differences are not a bad thing. Diversity is not a bad thing. But can the distinction between differences exist without bias? Can we over come our differences to educate the public and further develop our individual identities?